Posted on 14 Comments

What’s The Alternative to Vet Prescription Charges?

Looking at the receipt from the vet nearly made my eyes water.  They prescribed 5ml of drops for my old girl for possible glaucoma today, at a price of £51.02 for the meds.  I pretty much choked, said that the dog would have to get put down at this rate as I wasn’t willing to get into debt for her monthly drugs.

I know, pouting doesn’t suit anyone over the age of 8 – I sounded ridiculous.

I paid the extortionate fee and fumed while I waited to pick up a child.  I checked the Internet to see if there was a human version and thankfully the same drug is used for humans.  That meant a phone call to my local pharmacy.  They charge £11.45 on a private prescription for it.

So – £8.50 for the prescription and £11.45 for the drops (the chemist make a profit at this rate remember.)

A total of £19.95 from the chemist over the road from the vet.

The vet wanted £51.02, so that’s a whopping £31.07 more than the local chemist.

So, breaking it down, the vet wanted £31.07 pure profit + the £8.50 script and say £3 for the profit the chemist would have made.  I know it’s probably more, but it’s a conservative estimate.

In total, off a teensy bottle of drops, the vet wanted to pocket £42.57 at least.  Probably slightly more.  That doesn’t even count the £26 for a consultation to get the drops in the first place.

It’s daylight robbery.

Vet Prescription 1

I looked at Lloyds online and they were even cheaper for it at £7.85 so I would probably go that route if this ends up a  long-term prescription.    And at £7.85, Lloyds make a PROFIT.

If these figures aren’t making you sit up and take a look at your pets meds, they should.  Most medicines won’t be so over inflated as these drops, but you could save a pretty penny over a year if your animals are on long term scripts.

I’ve heard people saying vets have to pay more to get them in, but I don’t believe that.  A large vet won’t be charged more than a dispensing pharmacy for animals than they would be for humans, or they should be telling people to go and get their scripts filled elsewhere to allow the animals to get the treatment they deserve.

No wonder so many animals are going without treatment.  If people don’t realise they can ask for the human version where possible, they are being fleeced right royally.   It’s not fair and it’s not right.  It’s also not usually the fault of the vet we see in practice as they normally are just charging what they’re told to charge, but if we don’t talk with our wallets, they’ll just keep on overcharging us.

If the vet prescribes you something for your animals, check it out before paying.  My vet had the good grace to refund me the £51.02 and give me a script that I could walk across the road and get filled.  Talking to the pharmacist, she is surprised that  they don’t get more prescriptions from people going to the vets, given that there are 2 vets within a short distance,.  I would imagine most people are like I was and don’t realise that many pet prescriptions can be filled at a chemist or online human or animal pharmacy for much cheaper than we pay at the vets.

For the next script, if she needs more, I will ask for a few months on one script so that it works out even cheaper.

We all need to get smart with our pets meds.